Shalom Life | June 28, 2015

This Jewish Student Joined U2 on Stage in Montreal

“It was a cool moment, I have to say,” said the 23 year old dental student with lots of chutzpah

By: B. Shane Morganstein

Published: June 24th, 2015 in Culture » Music » News

This Jewish Student Joined U2 on Stage in Montreal

Photo: Luxenberg and U2 in Montreal

Credit: Times of Israel


Dental Student Ryan Luxenberg had the opportunity of a lifetime, after being called on stage by Bono to play with the legendary front-man and U2 at Montreal’s Bell Center last week.

Luxenberg, a longtime fan of the internationally successful Irish rockers, attended the June 16 concert alone, holding a small, handwritten sign saying, “Age 23. Can I play?” The sign clearly caught Bono’s eye, and before Luxenberg could even react, he found himself up on stage rocking with the legendary band, playing The Edge’s guitar and belting out “Desire” with Bono.

In an interview with the Times of Israel, Luxenberg couldn’t understand why he was picked out of all the people standing in his area also holding signs. However, when then singer called him up, Luxenberg didn’t take any time to react – he just went.

Luxenberg, who has been playing guitar for years and recently began singing lead vocals in some local bands, exchanged a few words with the superstar on stage. When Bono asked Luxenberg what he played, Luxenberg responded “Anything.”

Luxenberg then suggested the song “Desire” from U2’s 1988 album Rattle and Hum.

Bono then had David Evans, also known as the Edge, hand Luxenberg his electric guitar, and Bono gave The Edge his own acoustic guitar. Bono then quietly whispered to Luxenberg, ‘Show me that you can play it.” Not only was Luxenberg able to play the song, but he was also able to sing the lyrics. Bono even let the amateur take over completely for a few moments.

Many fans assumed that the encounter was planned in advance, thanks to Luxenberg’s calm demeanor on stage with the international superstars. Luxenberg insists the whole thing was completely spontaneous, and admits that he even amazed himself at how he didn’t “flip out” while actualizing his pre-teen dream of playing with U2.

“We exchanged a few handshakes and hugs. It was a beautiful moment,” Luxenberg recalls of his brief claim to fame with the band.

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